That question sent a WiFi connection among the three of us as we look at each other not knowing how to answer. The question is a little tricky and one needs to be careful dealing with law enforcement officers in this kind of scenario. “Are you his friends that brought him here?” he asked. Saying we are not his friends might pitched us with the other guys except the bar attendant and manager will stand for us.
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Me: We are not his friend, we only helped him down here.
Cop2: How did you get there?
Me: We went to see a friend but decided to have some drinks since we could not reach the friend.
Cop2: Who was the friend?
Me: She’s one of the ladies caught up in the brawl. We’ve taken her home because she’s drunk.
Cop2: What were you drinking?
. The question this other officer was asking sounded somehow, as if he was looking for a way of implicating us. We decided to allow only myself to answer all their questions on order to avoid giving contradicting answer that can give the cop room to exploit us.
Me: We all ordered for malt
Cop2: You are drinking malt in a bar?
Me: You can ask the attendant
Bar Attendant: It’s true sir, they ordered for three malts
Cop2: You guys will have to follow us to the station to give statement of what you saw.
Cop1: Don’t worry, you are not under arrest, you’ll only write the statement and leave. Your statement will help us in our investigation.
At this point we know we are closer to trouble because everybody knows you don’t just go to police station to give statement in a situation like this and come back just like that. I’m not sure a witness should be be forced to write statement at the police station since he’s not involved. I also believe the witness has right to decide if he wants to testify or not, it’s not supposed to be by compulsion.
Sam has started shouting and complaining, insisting we are not going anywhere because we know nothing of the fight. The second police officer twisted the matter and accused us of been his cultist friends.
Cop2: You think we don’t know you are lying? You guys are cultists and we’ve been trailing you for a while now.
Temmy: Haba! We just entered Lagos today and we were supposed to go back if not for the incident. Are we now cultists because we helped him?
Cop2: If you are not his friends, why did you pay his bills?
Temmy: They won’t attend to him until we pay something and was losing a lot of blood. It was a critical moment for him. We pay expecting to be paid back by his family.
We continued to drag the argument with the cops ad they insisted we must follow them to the station as they wait for the macho guy to recover some strength. Later in the late evening, a man wearing “agbada” flanked by two mobile police officers and some thug looking men came into the hospital. He spoke with the doctor and entered into macho guys ward. I could hear him saying “Fred, how are you feeling now?”. He was talking to the wounded guy and that’s how we got to know his name, Fred. I remembered Janet made mention of it in her message that the guy is a son to an influential politician. I kept hearing the thug looking guys calling the man “Deputy”. I don’t know what he deputies, maybe it’s a post he’s holding in their political party.
I saw fred pointing to us while the doctor shook his head as they converse with Deputy. He later came to us where we were sitting looking like lost sheep.
Deputy: I learnt you guys brought my son to the clinic.
Me: Yes sir
Sam: He was stabbed in the back after a fight broke out at the bar. We has to rush him down because he was losing a lot of blood but now the police men said we must go to the station.
Deputy: You are not going anywhere. Don’t mind them, they are working for the opposition. I’ve reported them to their boss, they’ll soon leave this place.
Temmy: That’s a relief sir, because it wasn’t funny at all.
Deputy: I really appreciate you guys, I heard you paid his bills
Me: Yes sir, they were not ready to attend to him without the initial bills and he was running out of time.
Deputy: That’s thoughtful of you guys. You saved my son’s life. I’m sure the opposition is behind this and I will show them. They are nothing but foolish opposition.
He kept on bragging while his entourage were adding their own, suggesting who it might be that carried out the act. He later asked for the amount we paid and gave us double of the amount as we left the hospital to our relief. I wouldn’t want to spend a minute in police cell, especially when you know you were only helping, it’s tormenting. We headed back to Sam’s house and decided to wash the car as blood stains from Fred has covered most part of the back sit.
As we entered Fred’s compound, we met Funmi there sitting on the front pavement alongside Sam’s junior sister. We parked the car where we could have easy access to water as Sam quickly get down to get us soap and sponges. I was reluctant to get down of the car as I don’t know what to say to her. I stayed right there in the car as she approaches us while Temmy got down to meet her. They were both talking with Temmy laughing as she smiles along but the more I look at them the more I felt like leaving the compound. Temmy eventually left her as he took soap and buckets from Sam who went back to get some sponges.
Funmi came into the car and sits at the passenger’s sit in the front with me at the drivers sit. She kept looking at me periodically but I kept a straight gaze looking into nothing specifically. We were in an awkward situation I never thought we’ll be this soon. Two love birds who were always in the company of each other for around six months were there sitting beside each other like complete strangers. I was eagerly waiting for what she’ll say as I still could not ascertain what went wrong.
We sat there not saying a word until Temmy and Sam came back ready to wash the car. I tried to excuse myself out of the car in order to join them in the washing but she used the opportunity to start a conversation.
Funmi: How long will it take for the sit to dried up?
Me: I’m not sure but we’ll try to clean it with minimal application of water so it can dry before tomorrow.
Funmi: You are leaving tomorrow?
Me: Very early tomorrow
Funmi: You can’t stay for a little while?
Me: There is no reason to stay, besides my mission here is completed.
Funmi: What mission is that?
Me: I don’t think it matters anymore
Funmi: Can we talk?
Me: We are already talking
Funmi: I mean serious one, both of us alone.
Me: I can do that, but that will be after the car is cleaned
Funmi: No problem, I’ll sleep here tonight.
Even at this point, I was still not sure what was going on and I can’t ascertain how I felt about her anymore. It was more like I have nothing left for her. The said diamond ring wasn’t on her but I wish it was so I could ask her about it.
We washed the car and scrubbed off the blood as it was not as easy as we thought it would be. Throughout the period we were washing the car, I was dead silent as my mood had already changed. Temmy and Sam tried to light up my mood by making some jokes but I wasn’t having any of it.
Funmi left with Sam’s sister to her place, probably to pick things she’ll be needing for the night. After we were satisfied with the washing of the car, we all sat on the pavement to discuss what it could have been if Deputy had not come to our rescue at the hard of the cunningly crook police officers.
Temmy: I honestly don’t understand where those officers were driving at.
Sam: Bros they were going to lock us up in their cell
Temmy: Why would they do that when they know we had no hand in the brawl.
Sam: Welcome to Lagos Bro. They might even rogue us as a criminal and threaten to charge us to court except we bail ourselves on time.
Temmy: Of course I know it’s all about money. Only God knows how many people are in jail just because they were rogue by the police.
Sam: Bros Will what’s up now? You’ve been silent since.
Temmy: You need to get out of your mind Bro.
As they were trying to get word out of my mouth, there was a knock on the gate which was rather unusual as Sam claimed they were not expecting anybody by that hour except for Funmi and Sam’s sister and they were not expected to knock since they how what to do for the gate to be opened. Sam did open the gate and we were surprised to see Fred with some guys coming into the compound.
How did he know where we are was the question and why would he leave the hospital bed when he’s still obviously not okay.
Sam: Wao! Are you okay? I thought you are supposed to be in the hospital
Fred: I’m a warrior, I can’t allow them to tie me down. So this is your house?
Sam: Yes, how did you get here?
Fred: That make everything easy then. We were directed here by someone. I really appreciate you guys for the other time. Who knows, maybe I’ll currently be answering for my sins now (we all laughed as he and the other guys came over to shake us)
Sam: You are welcome man, but why did you have to come this night?
Fred: I’m actually here to see my babe
Sam: Your babe?
Fred: Yes my baby, I was told she’s here.